Zille woos future business strategists

17 October 2011

Helen Zille

I've never seen Bus Strat this full," texted a fourth-year business strategy student on her BlackBerry during an address by Western Cape Premier Helen Zille at UCT last week.

Invited to share her insights on strategic thinking in government, the leader of the country's official opposition filled the New Science Lecture Theatre (NSLT) on the morning of Friday 7 October. Zille, quoting famous Canadian ice-hockey player Wayne Gretzky, urged students to "move to where the puck will be", as opposed to where it currently is.

Remembering late entrepreneur Steve Jobs as a visionary and an inspiration for her own political career, Zille related the (present-day) Democratic Alliance's journey from being a party that won a mere 1.7% in the 1994 general elections, to one that can now garner at least 20% of votes cast.

Some students would perhaps have picked up that Zille was walking her talk - "creating a space to own". In between outlining her party's strategy to win the majority in the National Assembly eventually, a healthy serving of political rhetoric ensured that a good number of the next generation would certainly give more thought to donning blue at the next polls.

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